Invitation to journalist over corruption report sparks reactions as Ohaneze, CSO blasts Imo lawmakers

Invitation to journalist over corruption report sparks reactions as Ohaneze, CSO blasts Imo lawmakers

More reactions have trailed the recent invitation of the publisher of the Nigeria WatchDog Newspaper, Precious Nwadike by Imo State House of Assembly following the alleged defamatory publication against its member representing Orlu State Constituency, Ikenna Ihezuo.

The Youth Wing of Ohaneze Ndigbo and Civil Society Organization, CSO, has condemned in its entirety the summoning of the Newspaper Publisher by the lawmakers accusing them of chasing shadows while relegating their core legislative functions.

Speaking with journalists in Owerri, the president of the apex Socio-cultural Youth Organization, Ohaneze Ndigbo, Igboanyaka Igboanyaka, described the Imo State House of Assembly members as mere political profiteers who lack a clear vision of their legislative duty.

He described the House as a mere bunch of political Illiterates who lazy around the governor, abandoning their oversight functions of checkmating the executive’s administrative recklessness.

“It’s undemocratic to use the State House of Assembly as a tool of personal victimization and a wheel to threaten freedom of Speech to silence the voice of the masses on the current misrepresentation of Imo people by the House of Assembly members.

“It’s illegal and a demonstration of political illiteracy and lack of proper political education for Imo State House of Assembly to descend so low to bring a whole day just to sit and draft a summon letter to the publisher of WATCHDOG NEWSPAPERS over a publication on the diversion of palliative made for Ndi-Orlu constituency by the House member,” he stated.

The leader of the Ohaneze Youth wing blamed the lawmakers for taking the matter upon themselves when the said publication was not against the general members of the house.

“If Mr Ikenna Ihezuo feels defamation of his character, he should approach a court of competent jurisdiction to debate about the Palliative with Chief Stanley Nwosu(Ochinanwata) who alerted Ndi-Orlu concerning their missing palliative.

“He should with immediate effect stop pursuing shadow and fighting people from Orlu constituency and provide in its totality all the palliatives made for NDI Orlu State Constituency,” he added.

In a similar vein, the convener of Beyond Platform, Chibundu Uchegbu said he was surprised by the speedy summoning of the publisher when many incidents of human importance have taken place in the state without them saying a word.

“Punch Newspaper published names of governors in the country who have wasted taxpayers’ money on foreign trips.

“In the case of Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, the paper reported that between 2021 and 2023 the governor spent N541.23 million without showing anything for it.

“Was the House not disturbed by the report? Why didn’t they invite the governor to appear before them? What happened to the oversight functions of the legislature?” He queried.

Uchegbu asked why the house members were not asking why the local government election is yet to be conducted in the state, accusing them of being selfish in their legislative conduct.

“Here in Imo State, innocent citizens have been brutalized and tortured by Police but the house did not summon the Commissioner of Police.

“What is so special about Hon.Ikenna Ihezuo over scores of Imo people who are facing abuses, insults, dehumanisation and exploitations on a daily basis and the house had not stood for them?

“What makes a lawmaker more human than other millions of Imo citizens?” he asked.

He used the moment to advise the lawmakers to rescind their decision and withdraw the invitation saying the issue is not important to the people who they are representing.

The Convener encouraged journalists to keep on with their social responsibility of being the watchdog of society.

“We encourage the media to continue to uphold the responsibility and accountability of the government to the people as given to them by the constitution,” he said.